La Simpatia (Guadalupe, CA)

This very special Mexican (or “Spanish,” as the vintage sign would have it) restaurant¬† has been in Guadalupe since 1944, but had to close down for a few years due to seismic retrofitting and rewiring. Much to our pleasant surprise, it re-opened at the end of 2015.

The Quiroga family has lovingly maintained the original menu and pretty much everything else about the place, including the diner-style counter,¬† the historic range, the napkin holders, and — best of all — “Pancho’s Hideaway” in back.

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No doubt, La Simpatia will again be popular as a location for filming movies and TV commercials, as it has in the past. Here’s a scene from the 2001 movie Cowboy Up with Molly Ringwald and Kiefer Sutherland sitting at the counter.

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